GUILTY: Tamicka-Jane Page Catlin-Smith turned herself in to police after stealing a car in Gin Gin.
GUILTY: Tamicka-Jane Page Catlin-Smith turned herself in to police after stealing a car in Gin Gin. contributed

No prison for woman, 20, who had a rough start

A YOUNG woman who stole a car has escaped serving time in prison after the court was told of her troubled upbringing.

Tamicka-Jane Page Catlin-Smith pleaded guilty at Bundaberg Magistrates Court on Friday after stealing a vehicle and fuel, driving without a licence and making off with a blow-up mattress from BCF.

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Macushla Pattinson told the court that on November 29 last year the 20-year-old put $35 worth of diesel in a car but her card declined when she went to pay.

"She stated to the attendant she would go and get some money but she never returned," Sen-Constable Pattinson said.

On December 13 last year Catlin-Smith made admissions to driving a vehicle while unlicensed due to a court order from September 7, 2018.

"That vehicle was stolen from an address in Mulgrave St, Gin Gin, by the defendant who entered an unsecured shed at the victims' business and obtained keys," Sen-Constable Pattinson said.

"She attended the Gin Gin police station to make admissions in relation to that matter... and it was discovered that she didn't have a driver's licence. That vehicle was located and returned to the owners."

Then on January 4 the defendant visited BCF on Takalvan St in Bundaberg, slept in an air bed and a camp swag, and walked out without paying for the items which were later returned.

Catlin-Smith was already on probation for stealing offences.

Defence lawyer Ryen Dwyer said his client's admission to police regarding the car theft spoke to her remorse.

"She attended the Gin Gin police station, she approached police about this offending," Mr Dwyer said.

"She told police that she wished to participate in an interview and confess to a crime she had committed."

Mr Dwyer detailed his client's challenging youth, briefly detailing her unconventional home life.

"She doesn't have a relationship with her family which is unfortunate," he said.

"Her mother passed away in June 2017 and her father is incarcerated.

"She only went to school to Year 7 and when she was 12 years of age her mother introduced her to fentanyl patches. Essentially she became addicted to those until her mother passed away.

"She began using ice to get herself off the fentanyl patches which unfortunately led to her having some issues with that drug."

Mr Dwyer said his client had befriended the wrong people, stole to pay for her drug addiction and admitted stealing the car was a stupid decision made under the influence.

"She has never worked in her young age but it is something that she would like to do moving forward, and she is the eldest of seven children," he said.

Magistrate Ross Woodford offered some guidance to Catlin-Smith.

"You seem to have a problem with drugs and alcohol," Mr Woodford said.

"That's something you've got to do for yourself, you have to sort yourself out. Otherwise you'll find yourself back here and in prison."

Mr Woodford sentenced Catlin-Smith to four months in prison with immediate parole and fined her $1600.

"Don't breach your parole or you'll end up in jail," he warned her.